Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Thunderbirds Are Go!

This UK mag special came out in '66 featuring Gerry and Sylvia Anderson's relatively high-tech puppet show THUNDERBIRDS in its film incarnation. I don't believe the series ever actually played around here although I was a fan of their earlier SUPERCAR, STINGRAY and FIREBALL XL-5!

Dial H For Hero

Most definitely one of my personal favorite comics of '66 was DIAL H FOR HERO, featuring Robby Reed, "the boy who can change into 1000 super-heroes!" Technically, the title of the comic was HOUSE OF MYSTERY. In the past it had been home to DC's trademark pseudo-science fiction stories and in the future it would showcase more traditional horror tales by new and classic artists. But for one brief, shining moment beginning with the January, 1966 issue, it housed this most unusual strip.

The setup is simple. Young Robby finds a presumably alien dial which can turn him into various superheroes. No explanation is ever given although it becomes Topic # 1 in the letters pages! Some are cool (THE COMETEER), some are lame (MIGHTY MOPPET) and some are retro (PLASTIC MAN!) but all are, at least in these early issues, beautifully rendered by artist Jim Mooney with scripts by Dave Wood.
The concept has been revived a number of times with and without Robby including the requisite "grim and gritty" version but the most successful version of the Dial H For Hero concept, although unofficial, would have to be TV's BEN 10!

Wait Until Dark

One of my favorite movies of the sixties was 1967's WAIT UNTIL DARK starring Audrey Hepburn and Alan Arkin. It began life, however, as a stage play in 1966. Lee Remick starred in the US while Honor Blackman took the role of the "world champion blind lady" in the even more successful UK version.

It's a simple but suspenseful story of a resourceful blind woman who is preyed upon in her own apartment by three men attempting to recover heroin that has accidentally come into her possession. The climax is played onstage in the dark when the protagonist turns off the lights to even the odds.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Walk, Don't Run

Cary Grant had been a top movie star and romantic leading man for more than three decades but in 1966, he decided to call it quits with a fun comedy entitled WALK, DON'T RUN. The plot deals with the much publicized housing shortage during the Tokyo Olympics of two years earlier and features a still remarkably handsome Grant taking almost a backseat to Jim Hutton and Samantha Eggar. As the film was produced by Grant's own company, this was the legend's way of saying it was time to move aside and leave the girls for the younger guys. Although he would appear in show business related functions and documentaries from time to time, Cary became a businessman and never looked back. He never acted again. Age never dimmed his good looks and he remains a favorite actor today. Cary Grant lived two more decades and passed in 1986.

00 Division # 11

Monday, August 29, 2011

Computer Nr. 9-Andy Fisher

Pardon the oh-so politically incorrect image on this 45 sleeve but this was actually a hit record throughout Europe in '66.

I'm not here to talk about MISTER CANNIBAL, however, apparently a remake of a French novelty song and sung here in a mixture of English and German.

No, I thought I'd share the flip side as it's one of the few pop music references I know of from that time to the machine that would, of course, take over the world--the computer.

No idea who Andy Fisher was. Is?

Click the link below to listen to COMPUTER NR. 9!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

The Batmobile

Okay, the Mustang was cool but was there a car in '66 as cool as the Batmobile? Customized by George Barris (from a 1959 Linoln-Futura) who has previously done other TV cars including the Munster Coach, Batman's high-tech, gadget-loaded car was probably inspired as much by James Bond's Aston-Martin in 1964's GOLDFINGER as it was its comic book counterpart.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Parallax Comics

Parallax Comics was a company that attempted to put out hip political satire and humor comics for with-it adults in 1966. While their end-product is actually pretty good, it was an odd format to market and at a price almost ten times that of a regular comic book of that day. Perhaps that explains why they only ended up with the three titles seen here, all from '66. Art was by the Bill Fraccio/Tony Tallarico team on the political ones (some of their best work!) and Little Golden Books illustrator Mel Crawford on the MAD-like KOSHER COMICS!

Three Stooges Trading Cards

Topps non-sports trading cards had proven popular so Fleer decided to get into the act. The perennially popular Three Stooges were on the downswing of their phenomenal resurgence of a few years earlier but were still well-known enough to get sales!

Batstuff # 10

Friday, August 26, 2011

Thursday, August 25, 2011

I Am a Rock Simon and Garfunkel

Although they'd already been recording professionally off and on for a decade, 1966 was the year most folks met Simon and Garfunkel. When you first heard of them, it was easy to make fun of Garfunkel's name. When you first saw them, it was easy to make fun of Garfunkel's hair! Then you heard them sing.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

T.H.E. Cat

Thomas Hewitt Edward Cat was more-or-less a TV version of Cary Grant's cat burglar character from Alfred Hitchcock's TO CATCH A THIEF. Premiering on NBC in '66, it was a memorable if not long-running series starring Robert Loggia in the title role.

Abbott and Costello

Since this Hanna-Barbera cartoon series never aired in the Cincinnati market as far as I can tell, it would be another five years before I would discover Abbott and Costello when a local station bought the Universal package. These aren't bad, though. Costello, who had died in 1959, was voiced by Stan Erwin, and Bud Abbott voiced the animated version of himself. Other voices were provided by the usual H-B crew.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Brian Wilson 1966

Originally issued in 2006.

00 Division # 10

THE BALEARIC CAPER (AKA BARBOUZE CHERIE and ZARABANDA BING BING) was yet another Eurospy 007 ripoff/parody from '66. This one starred Lithuanian-born Jacques Sernas alongside former Bond girl Daniella Bianchi and former Bind villain Harold "Oddjob" Sakata. The once popular Marilu' Tolo also appears.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

The Time Tunnel

Computer Weekly

In 1966, COMPUTER WEEKLY became the first periodical completely devoted to computers. It did not initially have a very large list of subscribers.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Tarzan Coloring Book

Future Doc Savage and game show host Ron Ely made a likable Tarzan in a 1966 TV series that led to quite a bit of merchandising in spite of its short run. Here's a '66 coloring book!

Batstuff # 9

The Caped Crusader was so popular so quickly in early 1966 that he was even shoehorned into the SUPERMAN daily newspaper continuity for a couple of days in early February of that year. Artist Wayne Boring had been drawing Superman comics and strips for two decades by this point but hadn't really done much with Batman. Thus his rather odd look here.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

TV Shows That Ended in 1966

THE FLINTSTONES would return in a feature film soon afterwards with many revivals up ahead including one scheduled for 2012.

The stars of THE DICK VAN DYKE SHOW would reunite for specials and reunions throughout the years including an actual new, Carl Reiner-scipted episode in the new century!

The ADDAMS FAMILY would become a cartoon series several times, a Halloween special with the original cast in the late seventies and a recast series of big-budget films many years on.THE MUNSTERS would also get a feature film, a cartoon special, a TV movie revival and at least three recast sitcom versions.